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Study shows increase in fatal car accidents in California

Given the overwhelming need to use motor vehicles to get around in California, there is a significant risk of auto accidents that cause injuries and fatalities. There has been a troubling rise in these incidents. The National Safety Council presented a report addressing this issue. Those who take to the road in the state in any capacity - as a driver, motorcyclist, bicyclist or pedestrian - need to be aware of this issue.

Statistics show that California traffic fatalities increased by 14 percent in 2016 in comparison with 2015. It rose by 19 percent over the previous two years. Nationally, the fatalities on the road increased by 6 percent in the previous year and by 14 percent over the past two. This was the highest growth in the country since 1964. It is believed that drivers who are distracted and those who are under the influence are significant factors in this increase.

For California, 3,680 people were killed in a car crash in 2016. That was an increase of more than 400 from 2015 and just under 600 from 2014. Across the country, approximately 40,000 died in a crash in 2016. In 2015, there were 37,757 killed. In 2014, it was 35,398. The NSC used reports from all 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia. Surveys also showed that 64 percent of drivers were comfortable going beyond the speed limit. 47 percent believe they can send text messages either by hand or by voice. 13 percent stated that could drive safety after having used marijuana. 10 percent they could drive safely after using alcohol.

These numbers are preliminary and the full information will be deciphered in the coming months. Even with that, there must be concern for those who are on the road in the state and across the country. A car accident can cause injuries that make it necessary to be hospitalized, miss time at work and perhaps have issues that will prevent living normally. With a fatal accident, families can be destroyed personally and financially. One of the most important factors after a car collision is to understand one's rights to receive compensation. An investigation must be conducted and all the evidence gathered to have a case. Speaking to an attorney experienced in helping clients after car accidents is the first step to filing a claim.

Source: sfgate.com, "'Complacency' sends traffic deaths soaring in California and US," Michael Cabanatuan, Feb. 15, 2017

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